Who are the Emiratis? by Dr Timothy Power

by Samuele Lilliu | 28 January 2020

A talk by Dr Timothy Power at the launch event of the Cambridge University Emirati Society on the 28th of November 2019.

The United Arab Emirates was established in 1971. However, the constituent elements of the country have much deeper roots. Successive waves of migrants have settled in the lands of the Emirates over the past 10,000 years. This short presentation will explore the main episodes of migration and discuss the resulting synthesis – both ‘melting pot’ and ‘mosaic’ – which defines the national character of the Emirates. It is further argued that a distinct regional identity existed from early times and that this provided a solid foundation on which to build a successful nation state.

Dr Timothy Power is an archaeologist and historian focusing on Arabia and the Islamic world. He is a consultant to the Abu Dhabi Department of Culture and Tourism and freelancer for The National newspaper.